Update: Jewish War Veterans Sue Federal Government to Remove Soledad Cross

August 25, 2006

Source: KNSD-TV


On August 25, 2006 KNSD-TV reported, "A group of Jewish war veterans is joining the long-running battle Thursday over a 29-foot cross standing on public parkland. The Jewish War Veterans, represented by the American Civil Liberties Union, sued the federal government in San Diego Federal Court 10 days after President George W. Bush signed legislation designed to shield the monument from legal challenges. The bill transferred ownership of the hilltop cross from the city of San Diego to the Department of Defense. The ACLU complaint, filed on behalf of the Jewish veterans group and individual Jewish and Muslim plaintiffs, charges Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld with violating the First Amendment. 'The fact is, the cross is on a piece of public land and says it's speaking for all of us -- for all the religions in this country -- and that's wrong,' San Diego ACLU Executive Director Kevin Keenan said. 'That's discrimination and that needs to be fixed, and it can be fixed by moving the cross to a constiutional location.' The legal fight over the cross began in 1989, when Philip Paulson, an atheist and a Vietnam War veteran, sued the city of San Diego. Paulson contended that the cross excluded veterans who were not Christian."